I acknowledge the graphic above from the Net.
In this 92 dharana and 118 verse of Vigyana Bhairava Tantra Shiva says:
At the start and end of sneezing,
Start and end of Hunger
Fearful, sad, confused or curious
Fleeing from battlefield,
Approach and be in Shiva state
What a verse! This is quintessential Shiva. In everything we do we can discover true awareness, Brahman, the Shiva state.
Even the mundane act of sneezing can lead us to him.
Nothing is ordinary.
Reminds me of a two Zen anecdotes.
In one, a monk from a rival monastery asks the disciple of a celebrated Zen master what is so special and extraordinary about him that
makes his disciples hero-worship him. The disciple thinks for a while and says, ‘That is it. There is nothing special about him. He is so
ordinary that he is extraordinary.’
In another, a Zen disciple questions his master about what is different now that he is enlightened. The master reflects and says:
Before I started seeking, to me a mountain was a mountain, a river was a river and a forest was forest. As I was seeking like you,
everything seemed different, not what it seemed before. Now, when I have awareness, a mountain is once again a mountain,
a river once again a river and a forest once again a forest.
In Hero’s Journey, Joseph Campbell talks about three stages: before th Journey or the Call; During the Journey to the Holy Grail;
Return to where the Hero started from.
True awareness is not special. We are truly aware deep within. We lose our way and then with effort we recover the path. The path is the
same. Yet, the Journey is different. This time around, you are the Hero, though you may be no different. No one else can help you in this
no master or guru. Shun them. They are deterrents and diversions. Believe in yourself and move on. Heed the call. If you find a mentor,
make sure that the mentor seeks you, not you the mentor.
Whether you start sneezing or stop, feel hungry or satiated, fearful, confused, sad, curious, or afraid, look within and feel what you are feeling,
observe what you are thinking. Create awareness of what goes on within you as you experience the moment. Experience it, however, as a detached
observer; as an uninvolved witness mindlessly. This is Shiva state.
Take pain, for instance. If you watch pain, you will find it initially intensifying when you are still attached to; as you learn to observe your pain in
a witnessing manner, you will find it reducing. So, with any emotion, feeling or thought. Perhaps you were expecting something eagerly and it did not
materialize. To make matters worse, your friend who you are jealous of gets what you expected. You feel strong emotions of disappointment, anger,
jealousy, sorrow and several others that you cannot even identify. Focus on each emotion and seek its source as a disinterested but curious observer, as
you would perhaps do with another person who you are counseling. Soon, you will be able to live with the disappointment of not receiving what you expected,
and even perhaps understanding the benefits of not receiving.
Seek to be aware of every thing you think, feel and do. That awareness will guide you to the Shiva state.